The FEI President has welcomed today’s confirmation by the IOC that equestrian sport will be in the Olympic programme for the 2024 Games and approval of the Olympic formats submitted by the FEI for the Tokyo 2020 Games. The quota for equestrian at the 2020 Games remains unchanged.
“The IOC’s confirmation of equestrian on the Olympic programme for the 2024 Games and approval of the new formats for Tokyo 2020 is a direct acknowledgment of our willingness to adapt and modernise our sport, so all the work to drive change and increase universality has been worthwhile”, FEI President Ingmar De Vos said.
“Approval of the formats for Tokyo means that we can now increase the number of flags in equestrian sport in line with the Agenda 2020 recommendations. With more than 30,000 athletes registered to compete in our three Olympic disciplines – and the numbers are growing every year – our new formats mean that athletes from more countries than ever before will now have the opportunity of one day realising their dream of representing their country at the Olympic Games.”
The new formats include teams of three and no drop score across the Olympic disciplines (Eventing, Dressage and Jumping) and the use of reserve athletes (horses and riders) for medical reasons. The format changes were approved by the FEI’s member National Federations at last year’s FEI General Assembly in Tokyo (JPN) following almost two years of consultation.
“It wasn’t easy for our community to make such drastic changes to our Olympic formats, but the National Federations knew the importance of this decision and ultimately supported the proposed changes. Their willingness to embrace this change is without any doubt the reason we have got this fantastic news from the IOC today.”
Ingmar De Vos also welcomed today’s confirmation of the IOC Executive Board’s unanimous approval of a working group recommendation that both the 2024 and 2028 Games be awarded later this year. The recommendation will be voted on at an IOC Extraordinary Session in Lausanne (SUI) next month and, if passed, the two Games will then be allocated at the IOC Session in Lima (PER) in mid-September, with Paris (FRA) and Los Angeles (USA) as the two candidate cities.
“We have visited the equestrian venues at Paris and Los Angeles and we’re really excited to know that they will be hosting the next two editions of the Games after Tokyo 2020, as they both offer a fantastic opportunity to showcase our sport. We will have an iconic venue in Paris, as equestrian will be staged in the grounds of Versailles, with the chateau as a truly spectacular backdrop not only for the stadium, but also for the cross country. And for Los Angeles we will be in the beautiful Sepulveda Basin, just 15 minutes from the Athletes Village, on the site of an existing golf course.
“Both venues provide us with a great opportunity to deliver the Games in a cost-effective way and, as France and the United States have a long and successful equestrian tradition, there will be huge public support for our sport.”